Irvin Wasswa- Tylertown Campus Pastor LHBC
13 Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” 20 Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ.
I remember it like it was yesterday! My first semester of college. It was an interesting time to say the least. I had a difficult time in my studies, not because the classes were necessarily difficult, but because for the first time in my life, I had professors who NEVER took attendance. I didn’t have to go to class. So I would opt to sleep in and skip, thinking that I could just go in on test day and wing it. Let’s just say that approach didn’t go well and academically my grades were not good at all! My saving grace however was a class I decided to take at the last minute called African Ensemble: I.E., African Percussion. I originally took the class because I had friends in the class, and because it was going to be a fun class that would be an easy A for a grade. All I had to do was show up to class, practice on my percussion instrument and play in the big concert at the end of the semester and I would be good. The class I viewed as an easy and fun class actually became my saving grace. I did so poorly in the other classes that this African Ensemble class kept me from flunking out of college. I praise God for that class to this day!
The disciples here in Matthew 16 were asked a question by King Jesus Himself regarding who people thought He was during the time. The responses varied. THere were many who thought He was one of the prophets of old. There were others who thought Jesus was simply John the Baptist. After the responses, Jesus then asks the disciples who they thought He was and without batting an eye Simon Peter responds with the truth. He and the rest of the disciples had been following Jesus for awhile, observing Him teach, minister, and share the good news about Himself. The Lord God revealed the reality of who Jesus was to Peter. He had the correct view of Jesus.
The same question asked to the disciples is the same question that is asked to you and I today. Who do You say that I am? Listen, who is Jesus to you? Sadly, even among those who follow Jesus, there is a fundamental misconception of who the Lord Jesus is to us. For some Jesus is merely just a genie in a bottle that you see in movies. His main objective is to answer all of our wishes and wants, and to make us happy. There are some who see Jesus as just a cool, religious figure with good teachings and self-help tips for a better life. For others, Jesus to them is a small statue that they set out and worship once a week on Sundays, then put away on the shelf the other six days.
All of those representations of Jesus are absolutely false. Jesus is God who existed from the beginning, who took on flesh and dwelt among us to take the punishment for our sins by dying on the cross at Calvary. He was buried in a borrowed tomb for a couple of days and then rose from the dead! He is alive and well and is sitting at the right hand of the Father in heaven. Jesus is the King of kings and the Lord of lords (Revelation 19:16). He is more than just a good teacher, He’s the GREAT I AM. Listen, He is more than just a statue we set out to worship once a week, He is the SAVIOR OF THE WORLD who deserves our worship every day, and is worthy of our life.
As the church, we must have the accurate viewpoint of who Jesus Christ truly is because here is the truth: The way you view Jesus is going to dictate how you choose to worship and live for Him. If you choose to view Him outside of His rightful place as Lord and Savior, then your worship and how you choose to live for Him will be impacted.
Who is Jesus Christ to you? May we choose to have the right view of the Lord Jesus Christ, and may that lead us to worship, both with our lips but also with our life.
Video for Reflection: THAT’S MY KING- S.M. LOCKRIDGE
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your love for me. Help me to have an accurate view of who you are everyday. Stir my affections for you more deeply and lead me to worship and live for you today. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?